Why AC Compressor Not Working but Fan Is Running?

Fan is running but compressor is not working

The compressor is a necessary component of the air conditioning system. Its function is to transport heat away from the house while the refrigerant is compressed. The heated refrigerant is heated further, converting it from a gaseous to a liquid state. The refrigerant temperature should always be higher than the ambient temperature. Heat is transferred from a warm to a calm environment. To transfer heat efficiently, the compressor must be properly maintained and functional. When the air conditioner fails to function, the root cause is the HVAC compressor.

Summer heat can be intense, and the worst is an HVAC compressor failure. Instead of warm and dry air, an air conditioner in operation provides comfortable, cool air. Depending on how frequently and for what duration the HVAC system is running, it can cause compressor problems. However, it makes no difference if the fan is working but the compressor is not, so don’t panic. Here’s an explanation for why this occurs.

Fan is running but compressor is not working

Why Is My AC Compressor Not Working?

When you turn on the air conditioner, you may notice that the fan is running even though the compressor is not. The issue is usually simple enough for a simple solution, but it may also necessitate the services of an HVAC technician.

The coil and filter are dirty

Scale or dirt accumulation on the evaporator coils, filter, or condenser coil can cause the entire unit to shut down. The airflow is significantly reduced if the air filter becomes clogged and the evaporator coil does not function. A clogged air filter and condenser coil increase compressor pressure and cause it to overheat. In the best-case scenario, the compressor will shut down automatically before it is damaged. Otherwise, constant overheating may necessitate the replacement of the compressor. Clear the air intake blockages and obstacles, clean the condenser coil, and allow air to flow freely.

Capacitor And Starter Relay Problems

Starter relays and capacitors are essential components of the compressor’s power supply. They are also the most common cause of compressor failure. The condenser generates the power required to start and run the compressor, blower motor, and outdoor fan. The starter relay is responsible for transferring power from the capacitor to the compressor. If the AC compressor is not working and you hear a buzzing sound from the unit, you may be attempting to access a faulty capacitor. The benefit is that it is the simplest and least expensive part to replace.

Dead Compressor

This could be due to simple problems like faulty capacitors or overheating units. When the compressor fails, the only option is to replace it. Please remember that the compressor will need to be replaced by a professional.


If the air conditioner’s compressor is not working, but the fan is, the outdoor unit containing the compressor will not receive power. The fan will continue to run because there is no problem with the CPU. If the compressor does not start, please double-check the wiring connections.

Problems You Might Face

If the air conditioner’s compressor fails, the following scenarios may occur:

  • Dry and warm air from a running fan
  • The circuit breaker continues to trip.
  • The compressor will come to a complete halt.
  • Strange noises and shaking coming from the outdoor unit.


Regular maintenance is the best preventive measure for resolving most problems before they escalate. A compressor is made up of several easily replaceable parts. Regular inspections allow for the detection and replacement of defective parts, effectively preventing problems with air conditioning compressors. K2mechanical offers high-quality products as well as maintenance and Repair Services at a reasonable price. Call us right away if you require air conditioning service.

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